Without realising it, we often seek the comforts of home in the cafés we visit. We look for a warm smile as we open the door, a dish that conjures up memories and a place we’d be happy to bring family and friends.
Open for just over a month, Eddy and Wills has become that place for many, including owners Matt Colman and Nigel Holloway who live in the residence attached.
The change of pace came suddenly one Saturday, after the couple had been looking for the perfect space for years. “I wanted to get back into hospitality but I didn’t want to work for somebody else,” Matt says.
“So for about two or three years we hunted around for a shop and a residence as a combined space. This place popped up and we looked at it on Saturday morning and bought it on Saturday afternoon in between a wedding reception and ceremony.”
What was once a hairdressers, security company and another cafe, the space has been turned into a cafe with its own distinct personality.
Walk through the antique double wooden door and you’ll be greeted with a wall collaged from old Geelong Advertisers from the ’70s found in the roof of the building and the Queen’s coronation papers she brought over to Australia – given to Matt by his grandmother.
There’s a charm in the imperfections, as the feature brick wall is slightly uneven and the concrete floors have minor flaws – each one telling a story from the buildings past life.
“We really just wanted to keep it simple to compliment the building, it’s such a beautiful building so we didn’t really want to change anything,” Matt says.
It’s always the little things that make a home a home and Eddy and Wills is no different. Take a seat at a table in the outdoor area and you’ll be offered a colourful fleece blanket to keep warm, or head inside and as well as taking home a coffee you can pick up a book to read from the community library the cafe have set up.
And the attention to detail stems much further than just appearance, the menu carries on with this ethos with the marinated beef pizza, chicken caeser wrap and chips and the ‘Big Breakfast’ popular dishes amongst locals. Coffee is also thanks to Code Black made in Brunswick.
It’s been a long time coming after working as an accountant in a law firm, but one things for sure, Matt and Nigel have found their home away from home in Eddy and Wills and so should you.
“I’ve always loved hospitality and I love serving people and it really makes a difference when you enjoy what you’re doing and are happy to come into work every day,” he says.
Where: 130 Church St, Geelong West
When: Tue-Sun 8am-4pm
Contact: 03 5298 2353
Written and photographed by Amanda Sherring